While the Congress has traditionally fought elections without a CM candidate (barring states where there is an incumbent CM), the satraps are increasingly using this as a bargaining chip. Earlier this year, Captain Amarinder Singh was declared as CM candidate. He attributed the victory to this and even exhorted the party high command to nurture more regional leaders. More recently, Himachal Pradesh CM Virbhadra Singh arm-twisted the party into edging out his bete-noire Sukhvinder Sukhu from the campaign committee and making him the undisputed Leader taking Congress into the polls.
Congress functionaries working in Gujarat find this is a big factor. Many say that BJP has started putting up posters saying “Vijay Rupani vs Who?” pointing out that Congress needs to put up a formidable leader under whom the workers can fight unitedly. This may mean angering a faction but it could also mean uniting the party under one leader. If done in good time, the decision could really work as a turnaround factor.
As a state unit president, who did not wish to be identified, points out, “When you don’t project a leader you still have leaders within the party vying for that spot. They obviously are not working unitedly. Gone are the days when people voted for parties. It is evident that they vote for a leader now. It was evident in 2014 elections when Congress was routed.”
Naysayers, however, argue that even BJP declared its CM in Maharashtra and Haryana after the results were out. But many in the Congress feel that BJP is already united under PM Narendra Modi.
A s R a h u l Gandhi gets ready to take over the reins of the party, probably within the month, he might just have to take an immediate call in Madhya Pradesh. Jyotiraditya Scindia has been vociferously talking about a CM face to take on Shivraj Chouhan. He has just been supported in this by party veteran Kamal Nath. Once again, backing Scindia would mean angering former CM Digvijaya Singh’s supporters and taking a fractious party in a high stake polls.
Source : timesofindia